Some 135 million people could be displaced by 2045 as a result of land desertification, according to a recent UK ministry of defence report
. This figure could rise to 200 million who are displaced by other climate change impacts like natural disasters by 2050, said British environment refugee specialist Norman Myers.
Slums are a curse and blessing in fast urbanising Africa. They have challenged Africa's progress towards better living and working spaces but they also provide shelter for the swelling populations seeking a life in cities.
Six million people in Brazil’s biggest city, São Paulo, may at some point find themselves without water. The February rains did not ward off the risk and could even aggravate it by postponing rationing measures which hydrologists have been demanding for the last six months.
Women are not only the world’s primary food producers. They are hardworking and innovative and, they invest far more of their earnings in their families than men. But most lack the single most important asset for accessing investment resources – land rights.
Latin America and the Caribbean should use sustainable production techniques to ensure healthy soil, the basic element in agriculture, food production and the fight against hunger.
Tugging at the root of a thorny shrub known as ‘juliflora’, which now dots the village of Chirmiyala in the Medak District of southern India’s Telangana state, a 28-year-old farmer named Ailamma Arutta tells IPS, “This is a curse that destroyed my land.”
Genghis Khan knew about hard times. The founder of the Mongol Empire, which spanned most of Eurasia until roughly 1227, Genghis and his clan had to survive on their wits and natural surroundings, often resorting to meals of “green leafy things” when food was scarce.
Canada is pulling out of the United Nations convention that fights droughts in Africa next year, making it the only country in the world not participating in the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).
The volatile politics of the Middle East have long been dominated by the fluctuating fortunes of a single commodity: oil.
The setting sun is still streaming in through the poplars along the shelter belts, but Horquin Lianjun is done with farm work for the day. The desert wind has turned bone chilling.
As scientists increasingly label desertification as one of the most burning challenges facing the world today, a small village in China’s semi-arid Northeastern region of Inner Mongolia is fighting back.
Valli, 50, and Sarasu, 60, have been working with Energy Plantation Projects India (EPPI) since inception in 2007, the income they earn forming an integral part of their household budgets. "We easily manage household work and a salary-paying job," they tell IPS.
More than 100 Haitian families now have new housing, thanks to the support of two non-governmental organisations working on reconstruction following the country's devastating 2010 earthquake.